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Sleep in the first days and weeks

27 Nov, 2023

The days following childbirth can be incredibly demanding and exhausting for new mothers. The physical toll of labour, whether it was prolonged or involved surgery like a caesarean section, can leave women feeling sore and fatigued. Recovery time can vary from person to person. Some may need just a few weeks to start feeling more themselves, while for others, it might take several months to regain energy and feel fully rested.

Here's a breakdown of the suggestions and insights:

Physical Recovery: Recognizes the physical toll of childbirth, whether through a long labour or surgery, emphasizing that it takes time to recuperate. Some mothers might have soreness, stitches, or feel exhausted and may need time to rest.

Breastfeeding: Describes the nature of early breastfeeding, producing colostrum (a nutrient-rich substance) and the frequent feeding schedule, explaining the small stomach capacity of the newborn and the need for regular feeding.

Sleep Patterns: Notes that newborns may have their days and nights mixed up and elaborates on how breastfeeding helps in establishing the baby's circadian rhythm.

Support Strategies: Encourages preparation for maximizing sleep when the baby sleeps and suggests having a support person who can help care for the baby, allowing the mother to rest.

Postnatal Care: Recommends seeking additional care from a midwife after discharge and underscores the importance of support for breastfeeding and mental health.

Home Environment: Highlights that being at home may provide more comfort and support for the mother, but also mentions the potential challenges in the first few weeks, suggesting gradual improvement by six weeks postpartum.

Mental Health Awareness: Emphasizes the significance of addressing mental and emotional health concerns and being aware of signs indicating struggle in these areas.

Adaptation Strategies: Suggests specific strategies for coping with sleep deprivation, like involving partners, taking breaks, and even considering days dedicated to rest and baby care only.

Prioritizing Rest and Recovery: Encourages minimizing other activities for the first two to six weeks and prioritizing baby care, rest, and recovery.

Find out more about the PBC Expo Midwife

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